All political parties are gearing up to contest the Delhi civic polls. While the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) has ruled out giving tickets to its sitting councillors in the three municipal corporations namely North Delhi Municipal Corporation (NDMC), South Delhi Municipal Corporation (SDMC) and East Delhi Municipal Corporation (EDMC), the Delhi unit of the Congress has given its consent to almost all of its 88 sitting councillors to contest the upcoming civic polls. However, the party’s senior leaders, two out of three leaders of Opposition, will not contest the upcoming elections, reported The Indian Express. Although, Leader of the Opposition in the NDMC and the SDMC, Mukesh Goel and Farhad Suri respectively have maintained that they have “not taken a decision on the matter”, sources have confirmed that both leaders have conveyed to the party leadership that they will not contest.
In case of Suri, who has also been the mayor of the erstwhile unified MCD, post delimitation of his constituency, Nizamuddin, has been divided into two — Daryaganj, reserved for women and Siddharth Nagar, reserved for women from the SC category. However, citing him as one the Congress’ strongest leaders, the party has asked him to decide what constituency he wants to contest from, a senior party official told IE. But for Suri to move to a new constituency, after having worked in his own for over 15 years, would be challenging. On the other hand, Goel’s ward Dhirpur is a general ward, even post delimitation, but sources said the leader has decided to excuse himself.
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Meanwhile, Leader of the Opposition in EDMC, Varyam Kaur, said she will contest from her Raghubarpura seat again. But the feedback to the party from her ward and the fact that it is a general seat may force her to move to a different constituency.
Apart from the 88 wards where Congress has sitting councillors across the three MCDs, the party had sought applications from prospective candidates. It has received over 10,000 applications for the 272 wards.It has also set up a call centre to seek opinion from over 94,000 workers throughout the city giving its ground workers the power to decide the candidate of their choice.
The election to three municipal corporations of Delhi will be held on April 22. These bodies constitute 272 seats, with NDMC and SDMC accounting for 104 seats each, while 64 seats fall under EDMC. The counting of votes will take place on April 25, 2017.